Doodlebug Club: Let it Fall!

cork trees main

At Doodlebug Club this week, we tried out a couple of projects I’ve been saving just for fall: leaf rubbings and cork painting.

Of course, there are lots of leaves on hand these days, and what with all of the events the museum does, we have many, many corks lying around.  We’ve got the paint and the paper, so this was a cheap, easy project.

You’ve done leaf rubbings before, right?  Put a leaf under a piece of paper and color over it using the flat side of a paper-peeled crayon.  This one required another little mini leaf hunt.  I limited my shopping to whatever was around the front of the museum, which turned out to be some interesting leaves – maple, hosta, redbud, and hydrangea.  Not all of them fall-related, but they all made lovely, unique leaf prints.

leaf rubbings 2

Above are the redbud prints, with a maple in orange on the top right.

leaf rubbings 1

A maple leaf extravaganza.

I had a couple of painting enthusiasts today in class and they were eager to get started on the next project.  I had pre-cut some tree shapes out of brown construction paper and glued each to a tan-ish colored sheet of construction paper.  Each artist had his own palette of fall-colored paints and four corks.  The goal was to stamp the round end of the cork into the paint and onto the tree in random places.  They did a fine job:

4 cork trees

A couple of these feature leaf piles that need to be raked up, I was informed.


Exhausted from all that imaginative art, the Doodlebuggers were eager to listen to a story – this week I read them Let it Fall by Mary Ann Cocca-Leffler.  This was a simple little story about all the fun things that happen in fall – the changing weather that makes the leaves fall, so you get to rake up big piles of them to jump in.  You also get to pick the biggest pumpkin to carve and watch the clouds on days when the sky is brilliant blue.  They seemed to enjoy it, particularly looking for the little dog that kept popping up at random intervals throughout the book, usually half-hidden (like on the front cover, here). A few pages from the book:

let it fall 1

let if fall 2

The book ended the with fall turning into winter, which brought the first snowflakes, conveniently ushering in the next book in the series: Let it Snow!  You know, I’d just as soon read a book that included a subtitle to Let it Snow! that reads: I’d Rather it Didn’t!  Interestingly enough, we’re expecting snow (only a dusting) this Thursday in the mountains.  Yes.   Already. It’s still October, right?

These two projects felt like a natural extension of last week’s leaf hunt projects and the book was just the right length to hold their attention.  We will definitely try these projects and revisit Let it Fall sometime a few autumns from now! 🙂

doodlebugWhat is Doodlebug Club?
I work at an art and history museum, and one of the best parts of my job is working with kids.    I teach a weekly preschool art class called Doodlebug Club, where I get to try out all sorts of ideas that will become some of the fun things that we will do with our Littlest Brooks-Livingston.  I’ve never had any real art training, but I think it’s a lot of fun, and to me, it’s very important to make art more approachable than it ever seemed when I was a kid.If you’d like to read about more of the projects we’ve done in Doodlebug Club, click here.  Check out my Doodlebug Club Pinterest board here.

Image credits: Let it Fall book cover –; Excerpt pages from Let it Fall and all other images belong to me.


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